Welding and Sealing Medical Devices

An implantable medical device is a biocompatible component placed in the human body to aid or augment various biological functions. An implantable device can vary from contact lenses to artificial joints to heart pumps to monitoring systems, and the market keeps expanding as the human lifespan continues to rise, chronic disease rates increase and organ donors become more scarce.

The interior of the human body is a hostile environment to foreign objects, and medical implantables require specific materials and manufacturing techniques to ensure proper function and safety in a patient. At EB Industries, we have decades of experience working with the metals most often used in implantable devices, as well as mastery of the laser welding and hermetic sealing processes required to produce long-lasting devices with the highest level of patient safety, while meeting ISO 13485, the standard to which medical devices must adhere.

Representative Parts and Applications

EB Industries has particular experience welding and hermetic sealing medical implants that have powered electronic components. One of these devices is an assembly for Abbott Labs, the HeartMate 3, the most advanced left ventricular assist device (LVAD) on the market and the preferred option for patients who require bridge care while awaiting a heart transplant, or as permanent treatment for patients too infirm for a transplant. The HeartMate 3 ensures consistent blood flow, reducing stress on the heart and providing short or long-term cardiovascular support. EB Industries has performed various assembly, welding, and later testing operations for thousands of these assemblies over several years.

A similar application we weld for a different customer is the V-LAP, a miniature, wireless and battery-free microcomputer that measures the left atrial pressure in the heart where high pressure readings are an indicator of congestive heart failure. This device greatly reduces hospitalization rates as the patient is constantly monitored. Doctors can also access data from the device remotely, without requiring an in-person visit, and can prescribe medication or other treatments as needed.

We also assemble and weld devices for pain management, such as spinal cord stimulators, which allow a patient to alleviate pain by selectively controlling electrical impulses sent to implanted electrodes strategically placed in neural pathways, via a simple remote control. A similar implantable neurostimulation device we weld is used to treat spinal cord injuries and patients with ALS. This device uses electrodes and a small, battery-powered external pulse generator to cause the diaphragm to contract to aid with breathing.